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A slanting plastic grid at the centre of a trawl net. Large fish are diverted by the grid into the keep end of the net whilst young fish pass through

Scottish govt announces GBP 1.1m funding to improve safety of fishing industry

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Tuesday, November 05, 2019, 07:00 (GMT + 9)

Additional funding of more than GBP 1 million has been announced to support the Scottish fishing industry and help make it safer.

The money will aim to reduce the number of accidents and lives lost at sea through a range of actions, including improved health and safety training and paying for more personal locator beacons.

It will also help to fund ‘smart trawl’, a technology that reduces discards by allowing for more selective trawling, and will contribute towards gathering data that will inform future fishing negotiations.

A "Smart Trawl" model testing in the laboratory (Photo: BBC / North Sea Center)

The funding will be allocated to:

• fisheries safety and diversification GBP 615,000
• smart trawl GBP 200,000
• gathering data on stocks to inform future negotiations GBP 310,000

Speaking to the Scottish Fishermen's Federation in Edinburgh, Fisheries Secretary Fergus Ewing said:

Scotland produces the best seafood found anywhere in the world, and many coastal communities depend on our fishing industry. But there have been too many accidents over the years, and too many lives lost at sea.

“I’m determined to do something about that. That is why I am particularly pleased to be able to announce further funding to improve safety, which will support costs in areas including training and personal locator beacons. This will be delivered through the Scottish Fishing Safety Group we established in May.

“The package will support further work to improve selectivity when catching certain species. It will also improve data on some important stocks – which is vital with the continued uncertainty around Brexit.”


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